The Chainsmokers Embrace Pop’s Dark Side

In the two short years since The Chainsmokers first took the music charts by storm, Alex Pall and Drew Taggart have rarely left the radio waves, with electronic-tinged, pop hits including Roses, Paris, Something Just Like This, and Don’t Let Me Down. Having first made a name for themselves as producers, the duo clearly know how to craft a hit, but what remains to be seen is their ability to keep the hits coming.

The group first came together in New York City, remixing for indie bands, only falling into pop superstardom, and the group’s name, by accident. Pall and Taggart aren’t as connected to The Chainsmokers’ moniker as they are to their music, stating in past interviews that the name really came about from a college-era predilection for weed and the fact that no one else had taken it.

For all the lack of creativity they’ve given to their title, there’s a new album on the horizon, and The Chainsmokers appear primed to start experimenting. The new music, the duo states, will be darker and edgier, but if the lead single, Sick Boy, is any indicator, will be every bit as hit-worthy as its predecessor. The darkness was inspired, as, the duo claims is all their music, by the society around them, in this case one that is social media-obsessed. Putting melody to the voices of their generation, the new music is not only a reflection of their peers, but of their own disillusionment with superstardom, perhaps best summed up by one of Sick Boy‘s lyrics:

How many likes is my life worth?

For The Chainsmokers, their biggest driver is not a futile attempt to replicate past success, to gain more likes, but to keep making music that excites them, and hopefully their fans as well. They describe it as something beyond just the sound of the music, but instead it is the emotions the music inspires. That, for them both, is the goal, and it is, they believe, most easily achieved by maintaining that balance between pop and the EDM underground scene they started out in.